skip to content

Faculty of Music



PhD Student


Ekaterina Pavlova (Katya) is a PhD student and Cambridge Trust scholar at St Edmund’s College (Vice-Chancellor’s & St Edmund's Luzio PhD Scholarship) working under the supervision of Professor Marina Frolova-Walker. Katya’s PhD project examines musical-cultural exchanges between the Soviet Union and the German Democratic Republic. She is particularly interested in the role of music in the nation-building and identity-making processes and the GDR's integration into the Eastern Bloc, as well as the uses of music for political and propagandistic ends.

Previously, Katya completed a bachelor’s degree at King’s College London (High First) and a master’s degree at the University of Oxford (Distinction) which was funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council. Her undergraduate dissertation, which was supervised by Professor Roger Parker, examined the connection between Vergangenheitsbewältigung (Germany’s process of overcoming its Nazi past) and the reestablishment of the Deutschlandlied as West Germany’s, and then the reunified Germany’s, national anthem. Katya’s master’s dissertation (supervised by Professor Laura Tunbridge) analysed the post-war reconstruction and reopening of the Staatsoper Unter den Linden (Berlin State Opera) through the lens of Cold War politics and propaganda.

Most of Katya’s work is transnational and interdisciplinary in scope. She is broadly interested in the intersections between music and politics and is one of the founders of the Music and Politics Reading Group (Twitter: @MusPolitics). At Cambridge, she was also a member of the Colloquium Committee at the Faculty of Music in 2020/21 and is currently a convenor of the German History Research Group (Faculty of History / funded by the DAAD).

Owing to her own multicultural and ethnically diverse roots, Katya is passionate about contributing to the growth of musicology as a global discipline and is always keen to cultivate links and collaborations with scholars and musicians from across the globe.

Katya has a strong interest in languages and linguistics. She is fluent in English, Russian and German, speaks good Italian and is happy to be contacted in any of these languages. She is also currently learning Chinese (Mandarin) and French.